As many of you know, starting a new business from scratch isn't easy and there are lots of ups and downs along the way.
Southern Soil, unbeknownst to me, has been in the works for the past 11 years. From those early days of making changes in my own shopping habits, to the launching of my first blog, Facing Your Food, which was read only by myself and a few friends, to an unexpected job in newspaper writing and forays into marketing and social media management.
I rarely take the direct route.
If you've ever started your own business or have ventured into the realm of the self-employed, then you understand that one has to expect the unexpected, learn new skills on a daily basis, learn to fly high without a safety net, and rely on a select few to help you through it all.
I am so grateful for the friends and family who have helped me throughout this process as the dream is becoming a reality.
And as the exhilaration of completing our first issue moves into the realization that the hard work has just begun, I look forward to this journey and the places it will take me and the people I will meet.
Whenever it can all feel a bit overwhelming, I remind myself why this work matters.
It matters because the animals raised to be our food need to be treated with dignity, respect and in a humane fashion.
It matters because the people who dedicate their lives to growing and raising our food ethically need to be supported.
It matters because the very earth that feeds, clothes and homes us is suffering and we need to heed its cries for help.
It matters because the path to better health is found through nutritious, wholesome, responsibly grown food that is available here in our own communities.
It matters because here in Southeast Georgia we need to support the businesses that keep our money close to home and improve our local economies.
It matters because all these things need a voice and a platform from which to be heard.
It matters because 11 years ago, I realized that I was meant to be one of those voices and that I would not be able to be silent.